NEW JERSEY — Representative Mikie Sherrill (NJ-11) joined with Representatives Josh Gottheimer (NJ-05) and Tom Malinowski (NJ-07) Thursday to announce that Zufall Health Center will receive an additional $1.7 million in federal funding to support their response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
This funding from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), through the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), was passed as part of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. Zufall will be able to use this funding to address screening and testing needs, acquire medical supplies, and boost telehealth capacity in response to COVID-19.
“I promised to do more for our community health centers after we passed the first coronavirus response package, and this additional funding will go far to help Zufall continue its mission of serving my district’s residents in Sussex, Morris, and Essex counties as they face an unprecedented demand for their services,” Sherrill said. “Zufall has pivoted quickly during this crisis to serve an increasing patient load through tele-health and other methods, and I’m so incredibly grateful to have them as a partner serving the most vulnerable populations in our communities.”
“One of my top priorities throughout this crisis has been working to ensure our front-line medical workers, health centers, hospitals, and first responders in each county in the Fifth District have the supplies, resources, and full support they need to do their jobs safely and effectively. This federal investment going to Newton and Hackettstown community health centers, in Sussex and Warren Counties respectively, will help boost care for patients and get health care workers and first responders tested as they continue battling this crisis,” Gottheimer said. “The bipartisan CARES Act rescue and relief package, which passed Congress and was recently signed into law by President Trump, includes significant federal dollars and resources for Warren and Sussex Counties. Both Sussex and Warren qualify for hundreds of millions of dollars in direct relief and support — including dollars that are literally going out the door this week.”
“The heroes at Zufall are on the front lines of this pandemic, and the additional funding we secured in the CARES Act will support their ability to detect, prevent, diagnose, and treat COVID-19,” Malinowski said. “Our community is grateful for their service, and I will continue pushing to ensure they have every resource they need.”
“We are most grateful for the support of our Congressional representatives in securing this critical funding that will help to keep our doors open over the next few months so we can continue to deliver vital services in response to the COVID-19 crisis,” President and Chief Executive Officer of Zufall Health Center Eva Turbiner said. “Faced with sudden, decreasing revenue, reduced staff, and the vastly increased costs of providing a safe environment for our patients and staff, we are especially grateful that these funds will make sure that we will be here for the underserved communities of color who are suffering disproportionately during this pandemic.”
Zufall is a Federally Qualified Health Center that serves patients with its centers and mobile outreach in Morris, Sussex (Newton), Warren (Hackettstown), Hunterdon, Somerset, and Essex Counties. Zufall helps serve vulnerable populations in New Jersey: Ninety percent of their patients have incomes below 200 percent of the federal poverty guidelines, and roughly half of their patients are uninsured, while the other half rely on Medicaid or Medicare.
In March, Zufall received an additional $118,000 in funding to help address the COVID-19 outbreak in New Jersey from the Coronavirus Preparedness and Response Supplemental Appropriations Act of 2020.